With more than 5 billion people on the internet worldwide, digital marketing has become a powerful tool to connect with your audience. Targeted content allows you to deliver material that resonates and drives traffic to your site. This helps you build brand awareness, develop a loyal following, and increase conversions.
But not just any content will hold a reader’s attention. You have to captivate your audience with engaging content that compels them to read to the end. Only then can you boost readership and maximize your impact for better ROI and overall growth.
What Exactly is Engaging Content?
Engaging content is material that draws readers in and holds their interest for the duration of the article. It could be compelling text that captivates your audience, or it could include additional content elements like graphics or videos that entice people to read your information in its entirety. Content can also be engaging if its formatting is pleasing to the eye and makes the information appear easy to digest.
Factors that can impact content engagement include:
- Writing style: Dry content is difficult to read all the way through while witty material keeps people engaged.
- Tone of voice: Business professionals relate to content that maintains an expert tone.
- Content topic: People are more likely to read about issues that are relevant to their personal situation.
- Reliability of sources: Links to facts and figures give information credibility and clout.
- Visual stimulation: Most adults spend more than three hours a day watching videos because they’re entertaining and engaging.
Above all, engaging content helps you stand apart from your competition. There are millions of publications in the world, and many of those are likely targeting your same audience.
To attract the attention of prospective readers, you must create compelling content that delivers value, resonates with the needs and interests of your audience, and engages readers in a way that holds their attention and propels them to read all the way to the end of your pieces.
In doing so, you’ll develop a following of brand ambassadors who share your information and implore their own contacts to become loyal readers as well. This increases reach, awareness, and identity, all to help drive more business and solidify your position as a leader in your industry.
7 Ways to Captivate Your Audience with Content
Creating engaging content is important for the success of your publication. But how does one actually go about creating such material? Here are seven ways to captivate your audience and keep them engaged with your content.
1. Know Your Audience
To write content that is relevant and meaningful to your audience, you must first know who your audience is. Audience research can provide invaluable insight about demographics, interests, preferences, and behavior that can help guide your content strategy.
Learn what topics would be valuable to your readers. Understand what kinds of articles resonate. Do people want how-to instructions, itemized lists, or in-depth research materials? Use this information to create content that meets the needs of your readers and increases the likelihood of continued activity.
Monitor social media network chat threads and forums. People will share candid feedback about your publications (and those of your competitors). Learn from this input and craft articles that address reader concerns and requests. Utilize this tool as a way to foster connections with your readers and create relationships that last.
2. Use Eye-Catching Headlines
An article’s headline is essentially its first impression with readers. It lets readers know what they can expect from the material, both in content and tone. Headlines are an important way to stand out from other articles and draw audience members in for increased readership.
A compelling headline should do one of the following:
- Offer something unique: A list of an interesting number of items can deliver helpful information.
- Create a sense of urgency: Powerful action words can drive people to read your material.
- Elicit emotions: Strong adjectives can connect with readers on an emotional level and compel them to open your article.
Your headline is like a window display for a retail store. If it’s flashy and eye-catching, it will entice people to come in and see what you’re all about.
3. Create Original Material
The thing that will set you apart from every other publication on the market is the fact that only you can deliver your unique viewpoint. Readers want to hear your take on things, and that’s why you must create original material. So many articles are simply recreations of others’ ideas, which eventually cease to provide any real value or meaning to readers. As people realize an article isn’t useful, bounce rates increase while conversion rates drop. All of this negatively impacts your ROI.
Readership isn’t the only risk with unoriginal material. Duplicating old content can be an SEO killer. Search engines will identify duplicate content and realize its lack of value for readers. As a result, those web pages earn low SERPs, limiting visibility and reducing website traffic. To maximize SEO efforts, create unique content that earns backlinks and entices others to share.
Incorporate personal experiences, share your professional opinions, and write in your own voice. All of these unique traits set you apart from others in the market and let people connect with your brand on a more personal level, leading to brand loyalty and lasting readers.
4. Optimize for Mobile
Today more than 4 billion people access the internet from their mobile devices. That’s a huge market you should be reaching with your digital content. Optimize your content for mobile by embedding large photos to keep images from bogging down page load times. Format your text so that paragraphs don’t have awkward line breaks and all-important information remains in view. Make sure all information is scalable so that your content appears the same regardless of screen size. People accessing your publication on a mobile device should have the same positive experience as someone using a desktop.
Consider that people using a mobile device are having to access information with their fingertips. Make sure action buttons aren’t so close together or small that they’re difficult to navigate without a mouse. Mobile users tend to look in the middle of their screen, so it’s important to place your content where people are looking. Keep information concise and efficient so users don’t have to scroll endlessly through irrelevant information on a small screen.
5. Deliver Value
Truly compelling content is meaningful information that informs, educates, and entertains. Useful content should deliver value. From helpful resources and reported findings to fresh perspectives and unique approaches, all content should focus on meeting the needs of your audience rather than helping to sell a product or service. Readers will see through a sales pitch or weak material, and it will cost you their trust.
On the other hand, material that puts readers’ interests first and delivers substance and value will strengthen your credibility. When people finish reading your articles, they should walk away feeling enriched and enlightened. Be a resource for your audience and provide valuable links, quotes, data, and statistics that help broaden their knowledge and expertise.
6. Back Up Claims with Facts
Whether you conduct your own studies and publish your findings or you cite proven research figures, backing up your claims with reputable facts and data can entice readers to consume all of your material. People want to know they can depend on the information they read. Seeing a link to an industry expert or a renowned journal gives credibility to your articles and your brand. When readers know they can rely on you for accurate information, they’ll become loyal followers and will be more inclined to share your content with their own network.
Proven facts and figures build trust and position you as a thought leader in your industry. Your publication will earn a reputation as a source for knowledgeable, well-written articles that deliver useful information readers can count on.
7. Incorporate Enticing Visuals
One way to make your articles more engaging is to incorporate visual elements into your text. Graphics can help break up content to add visual interest and make text boxes easier to digest. Colorful images can attract attention and make emotional connections with your readers.
Infographics use bright, fun icons and drawings to convey complex ideas in a simplified way so that an audience can grasp concepts at a glance. Articles that use infographics get 72% more views than articles that don’t. That’s because graphics entertain, engage, and captivate readers’ attention.
Video content is a powerful tool to entice your audience to read full articles. Videos resonate with viewers and elicit deep emotional responses that drive people to engage with shares, likes, and comments. They are a compelling way to tell a story because you can give your brand a voice and help strengthen your brand’s identity.
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